SESA Call for Entrepreneurs 2023:
Deadline Extension

Replication and Scale-up call

Focus country: Namibia

Call for Entrepreneurs 2023 submissions for Namibia are officially closed

The SESA project

Smart Energy Solutions for Africa (SESA) is a Research and Innovation Project funded by the European Commission under the Horizon2020 programme and coordinated by the ICLEI European Secretariat (a non-profit entity based in Brussels). SESA was launched in October 2021 with a duration of 48 months and is being implemented in nine African countries: Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa and Tanzania. The SESA project is developing and testing sustainable energy solutions as well as promising business models to accelerate the green transition and the achievement of energy access goals in Africa.

SESA’s main objective is to support a diversity of affordable solutions that deliver access to reliable, efficient and sustainable energy services for all, creating business opportunities that can directly contribute to development. Selected innovations within the three areas of focus: (1) access to energy, (2) productive use of energy and (3) circular economy will be developed and initially tested in a modular demonstration case in Kenya and based on initial learnings, various aspects of the tested innovations will be validated in four countries: Ghana, South Africa, Malawi and Morocco. The learnings from these validation countries will strengthen the overall replicability of the technologies as well as business concepts. To initiate the replication process, four additional countries (Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda and Tanzania) will be supported to adopt the technologies with the most replication potential.

The uptake of new solutions and business models requires close cooperation between local start-ups, innovative entrepreneurs, industry, city administrations and research and academic institutions. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can play a key role in this process and thus, we are looking for Expressions of Interests (EOI) by suitable enterprises and innovators that are interested in offering their services and/or products to explore the replication and scale-up of selected technologies (see below) and promising business models as part of the SESA project.

SESA Replication & Scale-up Call

The SESA Replication and Scale-up Call is built on the experience gained in the demonstration actions and aims to select suitable enterprises who are willing to explore the replication and scale-up of selected technologies and business models developed and tested within the SESA project. In below table, you can find the prioritised technology domains as well as the focus regions (where applicable) per country. Focus countries for this call are Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda and Tanzania.*

The SESA project will make available between EUR 50,000 to EUR 100,000 per selected enterprise for the design, implementation, and evaluation of submitted replication projects via service agreements. Entities are welcome to form consortiums to apply for the call. However, if selected, the service agreement will be signed with the lead partner only.

Interested enterprises should be operationally active in the selected countries and should submit project proposals outlining how they plan to boost the replication and scale-up of below technologies. Feasibility assessments exploring the replication potential of sustainable energy solutions in very remote communities such as in the case of Namibia are also eligible.

In this context, the areas prioritised under this call will be as follows:


  • Solar irrigation technologies for rural communities

  • Solar Mini-Grids for rural communities

  • Solar Cold Chain technologies for rural communities

  • Improved cook stoves (e.g. Waste-to-Energy Solutions) for rural communities

  • Any other Productive Use of Energy (PUE) appliances for rural communities

Elegibility criteria

Certain minimum criteria need to be met and only those applications which meet the below minimum criteria will be considered:

    1. Your enterprise must be registered and operationally active in Namibia;
    2. Your enterprise must have officially been in operation for at least three years;
    3. Your enterprise must have generated revenues and provide financial statements including income statement and balance sheets for the last two years (2022 and 2021);
    4. There are no pending litigations against your enterprise or members of its management team;
    5. Proof of previously similar work done in country.

Women-led and women-owned businesses are particularly encouraged to apply.

Overall timeframe

The work of the selected companies is scheduled to commence at the latest on 15th of October 2023 and last no longer than 15 months until January 2025.

The Q&A session below was held during the official timeframe for the SESA Call for Entrepreneurs 2023, nevertheless it contains numerous tips and tricks for a successful application. 

Evaluation criteria

The proposal will be assessed through the following weighted criteria:

    1. Innovation & Impact (25%)
    2. Business Robustness & Market Potential (20%)
    3. Expertise & Excellence of the Team (20%)
    4. Implementation Plan & Value for Money (30%)


Required (Mandatory) Documents

Applications must include all the below-mentioned requirements and must be submitted electronically via email to before the deadline of 3rd of September 2023 – 23:59 CET (Brussels).

List of mandatory documents:

    1. Application Form
    2. Certificate of incorporation/association and registration certificate
    3. Financial statements for the last two years (including income statements and balance sheets for 2022 and 2021)
    4. Pictures and technical specifications of your product/service(s)


Service agreements

Each applicant shall submit a detailed proposal for the offered services including clear milestones as part of the application form and a budget justifying the costs and resources in relation to the project proposal. Kindly note that the quotation is including VAT for companies that do not have a VAT exemption. Checking the consistency between these costs and the expected work of the project will be part of the evaluation.

Once a finalist has been selected, a service agreement will be signed with Siemens Stiftung on behalf of the SESA Consortium. Payments will be made in three installments, starting with an upfront payment after signature of the agreement and receipt of an invoice. Two additional payments will be made according to a staged payment plan based on the successful completion of specified deliverables after invoicing as per service agreement.

SESA Incubator programme

All SMEs selected will be invited to join the SESA Incubator Programme run by the SESA project partner Smart Innovation Norway. In a Kick-Off Meeting, after the selection, your company together with Smart Innovation Norway will evaluate the specific needs of your business and develop an individualised strategy to support you in one of four main topics:

    1. Business Planning & Monitoring
    2. Marketing & Sales
    3. Fundraising
    4. Organisational Development & Financial Transparency

Each company will have a dedicated mentor (local and/or international, as per need) who shall provide regular support in the above-mentioned topics during a limited period. Additionally, technical and business expertise from SESA partners will also be offered to the companies on individual basis.

Data protection

Your personal data will be processed in accordance with the provisions of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the Federal Data Protection Act (Bundesdatenschutzgesetz, BDSG) and other relevant data protection regulations. We process your data, some of which may be personal, solely for the purpose of carrying out the selection process within the framework of the SESA project. 

Please read the data protection regulations on the SESA website carefully before submitting your application. By submitting your application, you have given us consent to process personal data. You can revoke consent at any time with effect for the future.


For further enquiries do not hesitate to contact Ms. Elisabeth Biber at